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a letter to a friend

September 28, 2006

S—-,
I am working in a library now, a high school one, here in Etown. It is huge, larger than all the schools I have attended in my life combined. Student enrollment is around 3,200, so we have two libraries, one for fiction and the reference library. I work in the reference library, mainly in charge of periodicals, but basically I do lots of other random things as well. I am by far the youngest person in the department, probably by around 12 years, but I also work with really good people, so that helps. As for how I finagled it, I was lucky enough to find out about the job through J’s mom Sh who works here as well. Then I guess I just appealed to them. I think being a recent graduate helped, but I really don’t know why it was that they hired me.

The library itself is really beautiful, I mean especially if you find books beautiful. But the main room is two stories high, with books lining every wall. There is also a balcony, or a narrow walkway on three walls of the room. The fourth wall of the room is a huge bank of windows, with these long rust colored drapes on it. On mornings like today when the sun shines directly in, some of the blinds are closed, but still sunlight comes pouring through. Making all the computer screens hard to see. My little desk is in the entrance way between the main room and the reference room. I have my own phone, although I have yet to figure out how to set up my voice mail. And my own computer, which I use for such wasteful purposes as emailing and interneting, although I try very hard to limit it to before work or during lunch.

I am still learning things here at work, trying to figure out my place in the department and learning various library tasks. It is funny that I have already been here a month, only 9 more of those left in this year. My favorite of the random tasks I have taken on, was stamping all the new fiction books in this years “July” order. Basically this gave me an excuse to look at all the new books and call first dibs on them. So far I am reading both Freakanomics and The Book Thief.

Fall is definitely arriving here in Etown, the leaves are beginning to change, and the weather is moving from crisp mornings to just a little chilly. But this morning the sky was brilliantly blue, with just a few puffs of clouds. How is C—- treating you? Are you feeling more settled in? Have you tried the baozi yet? What kind of classes are you teaching?

Anways I am due to actually start working soon, but I too would love to know what you are up too and I apologize for my lateness of emailing. I feel like in all this transitioning I haven’t had time or energy for much more than unpacking and sleeping. But I think things are getting better.

take care,
Abby

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